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Rebels’ Taylor taking talent to next level

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By Zane Clodfelter, Sports editor

REO – Former South Spencer wide receiver Jaylen Taylor will be taking his talent to the next level after he signed to play football for Kentucky Wesleyan College.

Taylor, who also played basketball for the Rebels, said being close made KWC an ideal choice after he originally committed to Franklin College.

“It just felt like home, closest to my mom and my little brother,” Taylor said. “The coaches welcomed me with open arms - they didn’t lie about what they wanted.

“They told me what they wanted and they told me what they expected from me.”

In his career at South Spencer Taylor caught 167 passes for 2,043 yards and 15 touchdowns. He averaged 12.2 yards per catch.

As a senior he played in all 10 games and finished with 1,145 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. He averaged 114.5 yards per game receiving.

“I just felt like if I go in there every day and work hard I can earn my spot,” he said. “They kind of run the same offense as we did - they run four-receiver sets.”

KWC coaches told Taylor he’ll be a wide receiver once he arrives on campus and he’s ready to battle for playing time.

“The only thing that is going to be different is learning the play concepts,” he said. “They call it different names and it’s more of a tempo offense by throwing the ball a lot more.

“It will fit my system really well.”

By playing multiple sports, Taylor said he became a better all-around athlete.

“I didn’t have any time off where I could just be lazy and sit on the couch,” he said. “It made me work every day. Continuing lifting and playing sports every day kept me on track.

“I know there are players above me at KWC. I’m just going to try to work harder than them and earn my spot.”

He also took time to credit lifting coach Zack Shelton at South Spencer for his growth as a football player.

“Coach Shelton is always talking about mental toughness,” Taylor said. “Everything you do, come with a positive attitude and get the job done no matter how hard it is.”

Taylor plans to major in engineering.

“I want to make some money,” he said. “It was more of just going in there and wanting to deal with civil engineering.”